Disabled motorcyclist David Barr will be visiting George again on Monday 20 April.
GEORGE NEWS - Dave Barr, one of the world's most remarkable disabled men, will be returning to George on his trusted Harley Davidson on Monday 20 April.
The aim of his tour is to raise awareness for what people with physical disabilities can achieve and to increase public awareness of the role of the Quad-Para Association of South Africa. The Leonard Cheshire Foundation will be the beneficiary.
Barr, an American who joined the South African Defence Force, lost his legs when his Jeep hit a landmine in Angola while he was Colonel Jan Breytenbach's machine gunner. He recovered and, after returning to combat duties on prosthesis, finally left the army and embarked on a lifelong quest to help other disabled people come to terms with their disabilities.
The party of eight, which includes two friends from the US and support staff, will be hosted in George by Vossie Vosloo, owner of Thunder Cycles in York Street. "While the Thunder Cycles staff are checking the mechanics on his motorbike, all Georgians are invited to come and meet Dave at my showroom from lunchtime on Monday 20 April," said Vosloo. Breytenbach is expected to welcome Dave Barr to the Garden Route.
The public will have a second opportunity to meet Barr at a dinner sponsored by the Dros restaurant and wine cellar. Barr is expected to address a large crowd at the Protea Hotel King George that evening, from about 18:00. "The interest in his visit is growing by the day. George is really opening its heart. The Protea Hotel King George is also sponsoring David and his entourage's accommodation. There will be no entrance fee, but donations can be made to the cause," said Vosloo.
Dave circumnavigated the world on his 1978 Harley Wide Glide 1200, probably the motorcycle most unsuited to the task. He did this completely alone, without support vehicles, publicity teams or major sponsors. Falling off his bike up to 20 times a day in the Sahara Desert, and picking up the dead weight of the Wide Glide, alone, is unthinkable even for an able-bodied rider, let alone someone without legs. This earned him a place in the Guinness Book of Records and a place of pride for both him and his bike in the Harley Davidson Hall of Fame. He covered 132 000km over three and a half years.
On his next trip, on a Harley Sportster, he travelled across Russia and Siberia in winter, an unheard of undertaking - even for Russians. He then crisscrossed Australia. The Russian and Australian rides earned two more places in the Guinness Book of Records.
ARTICLE: MYRON RABINOWITZ, GEORGE HERALD JOURNALIST
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